What is one of the signs that freedom is shrinking? It is the seemingly innocuous request by any type of leadership to have people turn in their friends over supposed ‘violations’ of the government or the governing body. It’s a sad time when this type of environment is perpetuated whether it’s in a country or a service that has enough people to be almost the largest country on the planet.
So what service are we talking about? Well, let’s see, here’s a few hints and see if we can figure this out. It’s a privacy concern and the tactic being used by the company looks heavy handed and probably makes people feel uncomfortable. Go ahead, just guess. Yup, you got it, Facebook.
So what is Facebook doing? It is asking the denizens of Facebook to essentially narc out any ‘friends’ who are using a fake name. OK, fake names are against Facebook policy. That’s fine. But asking the users of Facebook to do the snooping and reporting on their friends is terrible. Like it or not that is something Facebook is trying to do and it just comes off as wrong, in my opinion.
Some users have been seeing a prompt, asking if one of their friends is using their real name. The prompt assures users that their feedback is confidential. Talking Points Memo first noticed this new feature after someone pointed it out on Twitter. Other than responding, “I don’t want to answer,” there’s no way to leave the dialog box. A Facebook spokesperson confirmed it with TPM, noting that it’s something Facebook has been doing in recent months to weed out fake profiles.
Ah but don’t worry folks. Facebook isn’t really asking you to do much of anything according to a spokesperson from, you guessed it, Facebook as reported by The Next Web.
We are always looking to gauge how people use Facebook and represent themselves to better design our product and systems. We are showing people information that their friends have made available to them and we indicate to the person taking the survey that their response will be anonymous to ensure them that we are not sharing their data with anyone and only looking to understand the results in an aggregate sense. Additionally, it is important to understand that we will not be using this data for enforcement actions.
Wait did I just read that correctly? It sounds as if Facebook is simply looking to ‘survey’ their users and everything will be anonymous. No mention of other user’s accounts being closed as a result of this information but don’t worry, comrade, you’re betrayal is safe with us.
Facebook, this is pathetic. Police yourself. Don’t act like you are are a friend. At best, you come across here as a benevolent dictator (and that’s not so great).
Do you really think your users are that stupid and don’t think that their information won’t lead to something happening to their friends’ accounts? Really.
Could this be a ‘jump the shark’ moment for Facebook? When will people have had enough to move on? Or are we truly part of the Facebook collective and there is no turning back? Welcome to the Borg.